AEG10E review by Ibanez

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  • Sound: 8
  • Overall Impression: 8
  • Reliability & Durability: 8
  • Action, Fit & Finish: 9
  • Features: 7
  • Reviewer's score: 8 Superb
  • Users' score: 9 (66 votes)
Ibanez: AEG10E
5

Price paid: $ 299.99

Purchased from: Guitar Center

Sound — 8
Because of the AEG body style, the sound isn't as pronounced and you lose a lot of bottom end acoustically that you would normally get with a full-sized dreadnaught. It seems brighter, but still sounds pleasant to the ears without being too shrill. The lighter sound is expected, considering the smaller body so it wasn't a surprise. Plugging the guitar into an amp is where this guitar shines. The onboard EQ is very responsive, with the Phase button noticeably able to help cancel feedback. You get back that full, dreadnaught sound and with the help of the onboard EQ or amp controls (depending on the amp), you can easily make up for the lack of bottom end that the guitar has acoustically. It's almost an entirely different guitar when plugged in. So acoustically, it sounds OK. Perfectly fine when practicing on your own, or for just having fun with friends. If you're planning on seriously performing though and tone is important, plug it in, even if it's just to a small amp on the clean setting. The change can be surprising.

Overall Impression — 8
I was actually quite impressed with this guitar. I didn't have much experience with acoustics and having played mainly electric, I very much enjoyed the fact that this felt very close to the electrics I normally would play. The slim AEG body makes it much more comfortable to play than a full size dreadnaught and the strap peg placement further gives it the "electric" feel. The neck is nice and slim in comparison to other acoustics and doesn't have the "big" feel. I was also surprised by how low the action was. Many of the acoustics I tried had an action that was much, much higher, and pretty much what I had expected an Acoustic to be. I'm sure with a proper setup, many of the other guitars could have had their action lowered, but this one was nice and low, right out of the box. Of course, due to the smaller shape, there's a compromise in Acoustic tone as stated above, but if it's just being used to practice on, that's hardly an issue. When tone DOES become an issue, and you feel you're ready to start performing with it, plugging it into an amp unleashes the guitar's true potential. Again, the smaller shape makes it a lot easier to handle on stage, making for much more comfort and, personally, ease of play. I definitely would get this guitar again if it were lost or stolen. It's fun to play, not too ungainly, and sounds surprisingly nice when plugged in.

Reliability & Durability — 8
This is definitely a performer's guitar. Fishman is well known for their Acoustic pickups, and this guitar definitely shines when plugged in. The strap buttons seem quite solid. The finish does seem quite thin, so lots and lots of hard playing could very well wear the finish down quite quickly, but without having had it long enough to see, that would just be simple speculation. The guitar definitely seems solidly built and I would expect it to perform, and withstand Live playing like any other Acoustic. Like any guitar, I wouldn't care how "quality" it would be, I would always consider gigging with a backup.

Action, Fit & Finish — 9
The guitar was surprisingly setup nicely right out of the box (I had opted for one out of the box, after a good inspection). Neck was perfectly straight, surprisingly low action for an Acoustic, and with very little buzz. An adjustment to the neck would probably be needed to fully get rid of the very light buzzing, but it would be a very minor adjustment. There were no "sawtooth" fret edges. The finish was nice and even with nice little adornments (abalone rosette, pearl markers, and cream white binding). I didn't notice any particular flaws on the guitar, at least none worth any noting.

Features — 7
Nowhere can I find any information in regards to whether or not this is a solid spruce or laminate spruce top. I've heard many tout that it's a laminate top, but I have not been able to confirm from anything specific (at least from Ibanez themselves). Also, according to what information I got with the swing tags, this came strung with D'Addario EXP strings. The AEG body style is a slimmer, dreadnaught shape. For the cost, admittedly I would have hoped for a little more, such as name brand tuners, or even a gig bag, but that's just a small complaint from my penny pinching side.

11 comments sorted by best / new / date

    geeve420
    I bought one of these for my wife. It is the red instead of black. I can say that it is a great guitar. Built well and plays even better. I have to agree with the reviewer here that this guitar really gets it on when it is plugged in. It gets a great full body sound. Just strumming around on it, not amped, though it still sounds really good, and is loud and crisp enough for those winery or picnic adventures. Good review.
    xBLITZKRIEGx
    I was looking at this model and a few other similarly priced Ibanez's the other day. I liked what I played but still haven't made up my mind. Thanks for the review.
    sstony
    I dont know where you bought your guitar from but as far as I know all Ibanez guitars are sold with gig bags and a strap here in Germany, except for the higher priced and they come with cases. You would think that Ibanez has that same policy everywhere. I would check and see if you may have gotten short changed. As far as the guitar goes its fairly decent for the price, and I do believe it is a laminate.
    Vampire Heart
    It's a nice guitar, but the acoustic sound gets lost.. I'm unsure about it, anyway it looks well..
    yz529
    I bought this guitar to be used mainly as a practice guitar to write music on. I wanted a narrow body acoustic that I could play for hours without my hands becoming fatigued, or my right arm being uncomfortable from sitting up across the body of a full-sized acoustic. As other users have commented, the sound isn't as full as other full sized acoustics; but when you plug it in, it sounds great. I put on a set of ultra light Elixirs on it and the action is almost the same as an electric. It makes for a great practice guitar the you can play for hours. For what I wanted it for its perfect.
    The Drunken
    I have one and love it. I play alot of open mics and have let other people play it and they are always complimenting it, as well as me when I play it. It has a great sound and playability, especially for lead playing. It is a great acoustic lead guitar and has me coming closer everyday to realizing my Al DiMeola wanna be dreams! When I bought it, I went in thinking Ovation, but after realizing I wasn't fond of the rounded back I walked around the room looking for something else. I saw the Ibanez and knew what kind of guitars they make so I picked it up and bought it after fifteen minutes of playing. I would have bought it quicker if I wasn't having so much fun playing it. I string it with D'addario Phosphor Bronze lights .012-.053. I at first used ultra lights, but the lights give a little more low end and don't bend off the board as easy, but are still easy on the fingertips. To Vampire Heart, you chose well, everything in the Ibanez line is good and moving up is only better, with the upgraded finishes and such. If you are looking for a beginner guitar for a kid, try the Ibanez acoustic or electric prepacks, the best quality guitars available in those prepacks. They destroy the fender crap.
    morgawer
    I really fell for this particular model! It's just so great to look at and the sound is good. It's not expensive either. When I am to buy a new acoustic guitar; I think this will be the one.
    ggaylmer
    I bought a black AEG10E-BK in a shop today. It won me over straight away with its excellent tone, soft feel, easy action, slim body and superb looks! I eally like the unamplified tone. I am used to playing a nylon electro acoustic and this compliments it perfectly. I find fingering further up the fingerboard much easier with this low action set-up.Now I wish I had waited because I could have got it quite a lot cheaper on the internet. Never mind...I am very happy with it and look forward to the chance to amplify at one of the open mic sessions I go to.
    Hoodoo2
    Thank you so much! I was hearinf all over the site how Ibanez isn't really a great brand, (they don't use real wood or something) and I was a little upset that my guitar wasn't good. I've had it for a few months now, it's my first guitar, and while I couldn't find anything wrong with it myself, I'm really not the expert. thanks!
    Bassplayer08
    i plan on buying this acoustic tomorrow, ive read several reviews on it and considering im looking for an acoustic thats fairly decent this one sounds like it'll do the job, when i listened to how it sounded, it reminded my of spring, a fair, smooth yet crisp sound